When it comes to lobster rolls, Ann Kim is a bit of an aficionado. “In most restaurants, they’re usually served dressed or ‘naked’ with butter,” she says. “But I love both.” Kim, who is the executive chef of the Garden & Gun Club in Atlanta, brought the techniques together when developing her own lobster roll for the restaurant. The result: a decadent sandwich that’s truly the best of both worlds. “The roll is dressed in a nice creamy sauce on a buttered, toasted bun, along with a side of butter,” she says. “It’s tough to beat that.”
For the dressing, Kim riffed on a classic comeback sauce, adapted from a recipe in G&G’s The Southerner’s Cookbook, that also gets slathered on the popular Club Burger. Augmented with a splash of lemon and an extra dollop of Duke’s mayo, the sauce thickens and brightens, complementing the sweetness of the lobster meat. According to Kim, consistency is key: “Lobster is high in water content, which will thin out the sauce, so make it slightly thicker than you might normally like.” From there, the recipe leaves plenty of room for adaptation. “The roll is best with fresh lobster, but cooking a live lobster can be a little intimidating, so pre-cooked Maine lobster meat is another great option.” In a pinch, however, the chef encourages home cooks to substitute as needed: shrimp, lump crab, or any pan-seared white fish will work just as well.
When you’re ready to serve, pile the dressed lobster into a high-quality, New England–style hot dog bun—when in doubt, “Martin’s potato rolls make a great substitute,” says Kim— sprinkle with your garnish of choice, and don’t forget a ramekin of melted butter. An equally tempting side doesn’t hurt, either: “If you’re going to be indulgent with the sandwich, why not be indulgent with some fries too?” the chef adds. “Finish them off with parmesan or truffle oil and really go all-in.”